Minister inaugurates Architects Council, seeks ARCON Act ammendment

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By Angela Atabo

The Minister of Housing and Urban Development, Ahmed Dangiwa has inaugurated the Architects Registration Council of Nigeria (ARCON), calling on the National Assembly to urgently amend the 2004 ARCON Act.

At the Inauguration of the Re-constituted Council on Thursday in Abuja, the minister said that the Act, which mandates ARCON to determine the standards of knowledge and skills necessary to practice, is obsolete.

According to him, the 2004 Act, heralded by Decree Number 10 of 1969, which empowers the Council to raise practice standards from time to time as circumstances may permit, has not been adhered to.

“The Architects Registration Council of Nigeria Act 2004 being a statute created by the National Assembly needs immediate and urgent review and update by way of Amendment.

“The Act needs a surgical review to align its mandate with the realities of today and beyond.

“The Ministry under my watch will encourage this Council to urgently begin work on this amendment. We should aim to remove all areas of ambiguities.

” We should incorporate the right to exist and function with the common objective of promoting the profession,” he said.

The Minister drew the attention of the Council to the recurring phenomenon of building collapse in the country, leading to loss of lives, and waste of resources.

According to him, recurrent building collapse had brought shame to the profession and the housing sector.

“As we inaugurate the ARCON Council today, I want to specifically charge the members to ensure that there is peace in the house of Architecture in Nigeria.

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“We must demonstrate the ability to organise ourselves. We must show that we can lead the industry. This must be evident in the way our organisations conduct themselves,” he said

Dangiwa recalled that the Council was created as a policy making organ of government to help in promoting the development and growth of the Architectural profession in the country.

He added that ARCON was created because the Government recognised the need to regulate and maintain standards in the built environment, a major driver of economic growth.

The Minister, therefore, tasked ARCON on accountability and transparency through the implementation of initiatives that would enhance good governance in the built environment.

He charged the Council to ensure that registered architects uphold ethical conduct and integrity.

He also urged them to be alive to the expectations of the Architectural profession and contribute meaningfully towards policies that would promote and enshrine standards and quality in the housing sector.

Responding, Umar Murnai-Saulawa, the ARCON Registrar, commended the Minister for inaugurating the Council adding that it was long overdue.

Murnai-Saulawa urged the members to work in peace and unity for the progress and improvement of the architectural profession in Nigeria,

“We have a lot to do because we have lost a lot of ground because of the problems we have been having all along .

“I hope this inauguration will bring a stop to the problems we have had,” he said.

The Registrar also charged members to uphold the responsibilities and tenets of the Council which included training and improvement of the profession.(NAN)

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Edited by Rotimi Ijikanmi

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